Written by Allison Hopkins for Très Fabu Event Planning and Design
A woman named Anna Akhmatova once said, “Italy is a dream that keeps returning for the rest of your life."
At Viaggio Winery in Lodi, California, miles and miles from the small towns of Italy, a couple’s dream of an Italian/Versaille inspired wedding came to life. For Brent and Jillian Meinyer, this type of wedding was a vision they shared—but the couple had no idea how perfect and real it could become on the breezy summer evening of June 19.
“Every minute and detail was crisply carried out to our benefit by Debra and her whole ‘Dream Team,’” says Jillian. “They can take your lives and pick out so many moments that they know will mean the world to you later.”
The private estate, surrounded by vineyards, orchards, and the Mokelumne River, set the romantic feel for the evening…while Très Fabu and the amazing vendors that were selected for this day each played an important part in executing the fabulous event.
“We based the entire wedding off of Jillian’s original color palate of champagnes, ivories, soft apricots and a dash of petal pink,” says Debra Hiebèrt, owner of Très Fabu. “Then when she found the gown of her dreams—that's when I went into overdrive design—and launched off of Shelley's florals as well.”
Shelley McArdle from Floral Artistry started her design based on a single photo that Jillian had selected. From there, she created elegant and vintage arrangements…roses and hydrangeas were used abundantly, and shiny ribbons and sparkly rhinestones added a perfect touch to the flowers. Each flower girl and junior bridesmaid carried her own purse made purely of flowers!
“Shelly is such an amazing person,” says Jillian. “She really stretched every dollar to make the most outstanding floral arrangements that we have ever seen. She made us feel like we were the most special people on earth.”
Brent’s black Armani tuxedo was complemented by a calla lily boutonniere with rhinestones. And then came the bride, who according to her new husband, “…absolutely knocked everyone out with how stunningly beautiful she looked!”
In a strapless, ivory gown that truly captured the romance of the evening, Jillian held a bouquet of light pink and cream roses, and cream calla lilies, and made her way down an aisle covered in pink and cream rose petals arranged in a swirl design.
“When she first saw her bouquet, she [Jillian] was in aw…she kept saying ‘this is just so beautiful,’” says McArdle.
Pastor Kevin Brown from Lodi met the beautiful Bride and Groom at the altar. Beforehand, he asked the couple to come up with five reasons to marry each other, and planned on including them in the ceremony. To their amusement, he repeated the reasons almost word for word—keeping the ceremony fun, meaningful, and most of all, memorable.
After the pronouncement of husband and wife, Jillian and Brent had a fun surprise for the crowd. “At the end of our ceremony—Brent has always been a long time Indiana Jones fan—so we played the theme music as we made our way down the aisle together on our new adventure as newlyweds,” says Jillian.
Everyone was shocked when an aerial confetti streamer launched as well! “They were crying and laughing…it was the perfect touch by Matt at Extreme Productions,” says Jillian.
Extreme Productions created a customized entertainment and production company for the entire event…each song was hand selected, personalized bridal party introductions were created, and the soundtrack for each scene had an energy and feel that was reflective of the moment. There was even a 3D moon projection on the wall near the cake (Jillian’s request)!
“As soon as we secured services with Brent and Jillian, we went right to work on getting to know their personality, their story, their interests, style, and taste,” says Matt Brys from Extreme Productions. “From there, we were able to build out the ‘experience’ of the day (the music, energy, MC work, lighting, production, announcements, etc… and we added in extra flair with lighting and confetti cannons for that WOW factor!”
An indoor reception followed the ceremony, with beautiful candlelit tables, gold plates, and gold chairs. Guests enjoyed catering provided by Viaggio Winery, which included several appetizers, filet mignon, shrimp, portobello mushroom, and lamb. The fabulous meal was followed by Divine Desserts’ scrumptious three-tiered ivory cake, with details of ivory roses around each layer.
Brent and Jillian started the dancing for the night with “It’s Your Love” by Tim McGraw and Faith Hill. With the moon projected in the background, and the lighting dark and intimate, the couple was truly “Dancin' in the dark, middle of the night, takin' your heart and holdin' it tight…”
Capturing all the special moments, from the private glances between the newly married couple to the fun and glory of the night, was Cinzo Photography. “We could not believe the amount of detail and thought that was put into taking each shot,” says Brent. “They went above and beyond for us!”
As the day is now a precious memory for the couple (and also was captured in detail by Thomas Hughes Video) Brent and Jillian are both very pleased with their decision to hire a wedding planner. “It was most important for us, as the Bride and Groom, to truly enjoy our day, our love, our way... and it was worth the extra amount of money to have someone else carry the burden of the minor details,” says Brent.
If there was just one word to describe how they felt that day? Overjoyed…that they had a tremendous amount of family and friends to share in their enjoyment and love, and overjoyed with one another as absolute soul mates.
Matt Brys agrees that this day was perfect in everyway. “Très Fabu spent countless hours ensuring she [Debra] knew the vibe and feel of the client and designed a masterpiece that made Brent and Jillian speechless,” says Brys.
According to Brent and Jillian, “You’re not getting married if you’re not ‘Très Fabu’”!!
For more information about the venue and vendors, please visit: